State Dept spokesperson admits rise in anti-Muslim sentiments after Gaza War

US State Department spokesperson Mathew Miller has denied any information that suggested that Iran was supporting the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) in Pakistan, contributing to the recent surge in terrorist activities.

At his regular media briefing on Thursday, Miller repeated his earlier statement that the decisions about the Pakistani government were for the Pakistani people to make, as he declined to delve into the allegations of skewed results of the February 8 elections.

Miller also declined to address the issue of US embassy officials recent visit to the Adiala Jail in Rawalpindi for a meeting with an American citizen incarcerated there, but they did not meet Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf founder Imran Khan, who was also incarcerated there.

“I would defer to the – our embassy in Pakistan for – answer that question,” he said, when asked, US embassy officials met Zahir Jaffer, who was convicted of murdering his wife, but not the PTI founder.

Earlier at the briefing, Miller addressed several contentious issues surrounding the geopolitical situations in Iran and Pakistan. He firmly disagreed with this assessment that Iran supported ISIS activities in Pakistan.

“So, I would obviously disagree with your characterisation. I’m not going to get into a long rebuttal about something we’ve spoken to a number of times, but no, I do not have information to suggest that, he told the questioner.

The line of questions then shifted towards Pakistan’s internal politics. Miller was asked about the US position on the allegations levelled by former prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, who recently criticised the formation of the current government.

“Ultimately, as you’ve heard me say once or twice from this podium, decisions about the Pakistani government are for the Pakistani people to make,” he said, reiterating the earlier stance taken by the US administration.

Gaza war

At the press briefing, Miller admitted a rise in antisemitism, as well as in anti-Muslim sentiments both in the US and around the world. He stressed that it would be in Israel’s interest to find a path to reconciliation with the Palestinian people.

“We have unfortunately seen a rise in antisemitism. We have seen a rise in anti-Muslim summit… it’s something we’ve been incredibly concerned about both here at home and around the world,” Miller said.

“We would – obviously don’t want to see anyone spreading hate in any form, and I would just say that we are trying to bring an end to this conflict as soon as possible and find a durable solution to this conflict,” he continued.

“It is in the interests of Muslims and Jews and Christians, Israelis, other countries in the region alike. It is in the interest of all parties to see this conflict end, and that’s what we’re trying to accomplish,” he added.

“And it is in Israel’s broader security interests to find a path forward for reconciliation with the Palestinian people, as difficult as that seems, and so that’s why we’re going to continue to pursue it.”

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